Minnesota Legislature’s Special Session Fails To Pass Police Reform Measures    

Early Saturday morning, June 20, the Special Session of the Minnesota Legislature adjourned without passing any police reform measures. Nor did they pass a bonding bill for various state projects or a measure to provide federal COVID-19 aid for local governments.[1]

The Minnesota House had passed 20 police reform bills that would tighten the state’s deadly force laws, put the attorney general in charge of all cases where deadly force is used, ban “warrior-style” training for law enforcement and restore voting rights for felons on probation. The Senate, on the other hand, had passed a more modest police reform package that would have required reporting and intervention in deadly force cases and a state officer licensing board to ban chokeholds and neck restraints.

Early Saturday morning the Democrats in the House made a counteroffer that eliminated their proposals for having the attorney general investigate all police killings and restoring the right to vote to convicted felons. But The Senate Republicans apparently did not respond.

This result was disappointing, but not too surprising with the Senate controlled by the Republicans and the House by the Democratic Farmer Labor Party (the DFL).

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[1] Bierschbach, Van Berkel & Condon, Minnesota Legislature adjourns without agreement on key issues, StarTribune (June 20, 2020); Bogel-Burroughs & Healy, Protesters Demanded Police Reform. Minnesota Lawmakers Left Without Passing a Bill, N.Y. Times (June 20, 2020); Bierschbach, Gov. Tim Walz implores Minnesota lawmakers to pass policing reforms while ‘the world is watching,’ StarTribune (June 18, 2020).

 

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As a retired lawyer and adjunct law professor, Duane W. Krohnke has developed strong interests in U.S. and international law, politics and history. He also is a Christian and an active member of Minneapolis’ Westminster Presbyterian Church. His blog draws from these and other interests. He delights in the writing freedom of blogging that does not follow a preordained logical structure. The ex post facto logical organization of the posts and comments is set forth in the continually being revised “List of Posts and Comments–Topical” in the Pages section on the right side of the blog.

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